Introduced for the first time in 1999 by Joseph Pine and James Gilmore, “Experience Economy” has been spreading and gaining popularity since then.
Experience Economy is built on the fact that consumers no longer need to just purchase a good or service, to increase their possessions, or to permanently own something. On the contrary, purchasing goods and services is not enough anymore, consumers, especially of today, need an experience, an event they can interact with, a product/service-consumer relationship that goes both ways.
The concept of “Experience Economy” didn’t just pop-up. It took many years to finally come into effect after its introduction in 1999, and seemed to reach its peak in this Digital Age.
Consumers are now not only more digital oriented and most of their lives is spent on social media, they are also more demanding and have high expectations of their brands. They don’t simply expect a certain brand to just offer a good or service, but it also has to offer an accompanying experience and two-way interaction and communication with them.
More than that, they no longer expect that the quality of goods and services provided to stay the same, but to constantly improve and develop.
Consumers feel more invested in brands that offer that experience, and as a result, are more loyal to it. However, with the increase in number of brands offering different products and services, these consumers are always faced with a choice to make. And no matter what the choice is, it is usually based on the brand’s ability to meet the one need all consumers have now: Satisfaction, and not just any satisfaction, but an instant one.
That’s why, many companies have taken the route to enter the “Experience Economy” to attract more and more consumers and to gain their loyalty. The more interactive and influential the experience you provide is, and the higher quality it has, the more loyal consumers will become to your company and brand.
Contrary to popular belief, this consumer experience doesn’t have to be huge or too expensive, it can be something as simple as introducing a new service. An example of that was when Domino’s Pizza introduced the ability make an order through sending them an email instead of making a phone call or waiting in line to make your order at the restaurant itself.
Other examples of consumer experience include the consistent and welcoming service of a certain restaurant and its atmosphere, which can be an enough reason for the customers to return to this restaurant time and time again. It can also be the luxurious services provided by a hotel and that are personalized to meet each guest’s individual needs, which might make these guests willing to pay more just to enjoy the experience offered to them.
Furthermore, Experience Economy has made its way to marketing and advertising. No longer is a TV advertisement or just a billboard enough. To reach as many people as possible and to leave a mark, a campaign must go through different kinds of media; such as: TV, radio, and press; social media; and offline.
So, you can start a campaign by a TV ad, but you have to follow it up with social media, as well as offline events to enhance the customer’s experience.
So, in this constantly developing world, customers know exactly what they want and are willing to pay more for it, which is why the decision for companies to take the steps towards “Experience Economy” and being more customer-oriented isn’t just an option anymore, but a necessity; it can be one of their best and most powerful competitive advantages.
If you want to build a strong brand, one that customers will be more loyal to, you need to provide them with what they want; an experience, something memorable to live through and talk about, something that makes them participants and not just buyers of goods, or users of services.
Written by Yasmine Mokhtar